It’s happened. Finally…
Industry has shifted from targeting millennials with iPods a few years ago to complex B2B deals now.
We’ve grown up and grown into positions of authority.
This gives millennial salespeople an edge over our older competition. All we have to do is sell the way we would want to be sold.
That cliché has been around forever!
So what has changed?
Here are the 3 things millennial buyers value more than ever –
1) Getting Content
We millennials are obsessed with content. Do you know what I did in my ‘break’ before working on this post?
I watched 3x short Youtube clips from people/brands that I’ve chosen to subscribe to.
- No TV (I don’t want to have to wait for a certain time to view my content)
- No radio (not when I can listen to podcasts or create my own personalised radio station with Spotify)
- No print (I love books but I’ve not bought and read a magazine in years)
I curated my own content and watched what I thought would be useful and interesting to me in that moment.
Salespeople need to take note of this.
The easiest way to engage with a millennial buyer is to share some content with them.
There are two benefits to this –
- You’re in control – According to CEB 60% of the sales process happens before the prospect engages with you.They’re gobbling up content online so they’re informed before they move things forward.Why not feed them content that you have cherry picked?. This puts your product in a favourable light and it allows them to then ask you questions directly rather than just googling for an answer.
- You’re the expert – By giving prospects content to consume you become their go to industry expert. Even if you didn’t write any of it! When there are near infinate places to get product research, prospects will only ever reach out to the known ‘experts’ in the field so make sure you’re one of them.
2) Getting Deep
There are no excuses in the internet age for not getting deep with your research into prospects.
Information is so abundant that if you’re talking in generalities and avoiding specifics when you speak with them it shows you haven’t made any effort.
Apparently, in the ‘good-old-days’ it was fine to ask a prospect to tell you “a little bit about their business”.
If a salesperson called and asked me to do their research for them on the phone whilst I could be doing something more important I’d likely hang up.
Luckily the discovery process can be helped along by leveraging technology. It’s a 2 step process –
Step 1 – An Information Hub
I used to make real, physical, paper notes with an actual pen (remember those) about my prospects before I called them.
This worked great until I’d spoken to them multiple times and my scribbles, updates and crossing out made the document ilegable.
Now I use Pipedrive (a partner of the Salesman Podcast) to manage everything.
It allows me to store the information I need about each one of my prospects and importantly pull out when I need it most.
This is generally 5 minutes before I walk into the buyers office and I want to refresh myself one more time on what their dogs name is (people with dogs, ALWAYS love talking about their dogs).
I’ll just pull out my phone, dive into their APP and bam, everything I’ve ever noted about the prospect is there.
Pipedrive is particularly powerful because it syncs with…
Step 2 – Automated Tools
It might sound like a nice Friday afternoon activity (‘working’ whilst watching Youtube on the sofa at home) but you can automate the process of getting LinkedIn data into your Pipedrive prospect hub with tools like this.
As I do most of my email in Gmail, Ecquire is another invaluable tool which allows me to pull all my email data into the hub.
Finally Yesware pulls in yet more data and lets me track when my emails are opened.
Knowing someone is opening your emails but not responding shows you they’re engaged but need something more from you.
Why not give them a call and be present.
3) Getting Present
I discussed the power of being ‘present’ on the Salesman Podcast with Anese Cavanaugh.
Older generations expect it, often millennials do not.
I regularly tell my friends off for looking down and texting mid conversation.
Am I just that bad at asking interesting questions?
Does your sister really have to know right now if she can borrow your hair straighteners this evening?!
If I did that to my Dad he’d likely snatch the phone off me, tell me I’m being rude and not give it back.
Until I explained that I’m a 29 year old man and I don’t respond to that any more.
Then he’d try and ground me!
My nan being older again, would just whack me on the top of my head.
This is why being present with millennial prospects is so powerful. They’re just not used to it.
When you walk into their office with a notebook/pen ready to jot down notes and you’re prepared to stay for as long as it takes to work out how you can add value – it blows minds!
It shouldn’t but it does because the majority of sales people are wrapped up in their own little world.
- I’m two deals away from hitting target, if I can just close this next one…
- I’ve this presentation to do on Friday which I’ve not started
- I’m due in my next meeting in 2 hours, traffic might be bad
- I’ve no even looked at my emails in 2 days
They put this into their prospects with every half engaged, constant checking of their smart watch meeting they spend with them.
Millennial prospects don’t care about your problems.
But they will care about you if you’re present, well prepared and have shared the correct content with them.